Service Blueprinting: A Practical Technique for Service Innovation

Mary Jo Bitner, Arizona State University
Amy L. Ostrom, Arizona State University
Felicia N. Morgan, University of West Florida

This article describes one technique—service blueprinting—that has proven useful for service innovation. Service blueprinting is securely grounded in the customer’s experience and it allows the clear visualization dynamic service processes. The technique is described in detail in the paper including real case examples that illustrate the value and breadth of its applications.

The cases illustrate how service blueprinting can be successfully applied for the following purposes:

  • Providing a platform for innovation
  • Recognizing interdependencies among people and functions in delivering service
  • Facilitating both strategic and tactical innovations
  • Designing moments of truth
  • Visualizing and understanding the customer’s experience
  • Transferring and storing innovation knowledge
  • Creating ideal experiences

Clarifying competitive positioning
Guidelines for a service blueprinting workshop based on Arizona State University’s Center for Services Leadership programs are provided along with detailed insights for managers and academics.

 

This article is based on workshops and case studies with CSL member firms and others. The paper appeared in California Management Review, Spring 2008, 66-94.